The number of tractor-trailers using the highways in the state of Texas has increased substantially with the Eagle Ford Shale boom. While the increased production has benefited many landowners and holders of mineral interests, it has come at a price.
The explosive growth and radical increase in the number of tractor-trailers has created a problem for the counties in the Eagle Ford. Congested highways and damage to infrastructure from increased traffic are part of the issue.
The price is also included a substantial increase in 18-wheeler accidents in the related areas. Automobile drivers find themselves sharing the road ever more frequently in these areas.
Unfortunately, not all of the big rigs that are on the road are safe. When surprise inspections take place, the results are always the same and many trucks are placed “out of service” because they are unsafe and unfit to be on the roadway.
One might believe that there is not much you can do to prevent an accident with a semi truck. The automobile insurance company Geico has provided a helpful guide for sharing the road with a trucker.
Or click here for a PDF version.
Some of the suggestions from Geico include:
• Avoid blind spots or “no – zones” that include the front sides and back of the truck. There are some areas where a truck driver’s vision is limited due to the size of the truck. Staying out of these danger areas is a good first step to avoiding a tractor-trailer crash.
• When passing a big truck, give yourself plenty of room before pulling back in front of the truck. Make sure that you can see the truck clearly in the rearview mirror before pulling back into the lane.
• Understand the big rigs take longer to stop the passenger cars avoid a sudden stop if you can in front of a big rig. We suggest that you avoid driving directly in front of a big rig if you can.
• Big trucks need a lot of room to turn, and often the truck drivers cannot see vehicles to the side of them. Do not get caught in a “squeeze play”.
• Always be attentive when driving around big rigs.
Allowing a cushion between yourself and an 18-wheeler is always a good idea. It takes a semi truck about one third longer to stop than a passenger car and for that reason we suggest that you try to avoid having a big rig right behind you.
Geico is to be commended for its efforts to help prevent accidents and its share of helpful information such as the suggestions of about sharing the road with a big truck.